Remembering TCPaul, 2016-2019

Going to new firm

Long time lurker, first time poster. Be gentle. I am a t tombrady1201/02/19
If you're having anxiety issues then JDU is not the best pla wallypancake01/02/19
I'm asking about any attorneys who have been in a similar po tombrady1201/02/19
You need to make the best decision for you. My old firm was lolwutjobs01/02/19
I felt the same angst when I left my first firm. It was a g pauperesq01/02/19
Same. It feels bad to leave someone who's been good to you, jeffm01/02/19
you're lucky. i was almost 10 years at mine, and I was ignor legalbeagle01/02/19
I think this is a pretty common experience, sadly. Interest pauperesq01/03/19
How dare they leave before being fired!!! triplesix01/03/19
You're a good employee to have. Most people would take the newyorkcity01/02/19
"Anyone been in a similar position and can offer any advice smallyer01/02/19
My last firm pretty much taught me Immigration law (mostly r isthisit01/03/19
If you're talking about a small firm and you have hearings s smallyer01/03/19
tombrady12 (Jan 2, 2019 - 3:59 pm)

Long time lurker, first time poster. Be gentle.

I am a third year associate practicing at a mid size midwestern firm (about 25 attorneys over three offices, including one office with one attorney). Went to a mid-tier west coast law school. I enjoyed my first 10 or so months on the job. Then, a series of events took place that led me to believe I wasn't at the best firm. These events have kept up and I reached out to try to change my situation. Through some connections and wandering around on my own, I was able to secure an offer of employment from a bigger firm that focuses nearly entirely on civil defense, which is what I wanted.

However, I have massive anxiety about leaving my current firm. They have all been extremely kind to me and have invested a lot in me. Anyone been in a similar position and can offer any advice in dealing with this anxiety?

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wallypancake (Jan 2, 2019 - 4:16 pm)

If you're having anxiety issues then JDU is not the best place to go to help you get over those issues.

If you're asking strictly about loyalty then that is a different issue. However, from your post, it seems that you want some lawyer on JDU to be your shrink. Not a good idea. I don't know if NRAL is still out there. He deals with serious anxiety issues.

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tombrady12 (Jan 2, 2019 - 4:27 pm)

I'm asking about any attorneys who have been in a similar position and how they have handled it.

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lolwutjobs (Jan 2, 2019 - 4:34 pm)

You need to make the best decision for you. My old firm was great and my old boss even gave me some cash for a wedding present. However, I had to make a decision that was best for my growing family. It was very difficult. I gave 6 weeks notice and worked as hard as ever during that time.

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pauperesq (Jan 2, 2019 - 4:42 pm)

I felt the same angst when I left my first firm. It was a good environment with a lot of great people, but I wanted opportunities in a different practice area that they were never going to give me so I made a change. It was difficult to tell my boss, who was and still is a mentor, but my professional development comes first. I stayed 3 weeks to help close/transition files. Everyone was sorry to see me go but I left on good terms. I still keep up with several of the partners there and refer some things to them every so often.

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jeffm (Jan 2, 2019 - 5:11 pm)

Same. It feels bad to leave someone who's been good to you, but sometimes you have to go and find your own way. Everyone will understand and wish you well.

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legalbeagle (Jan 2, 2019 - 7:33 pm)

you're lucky. i was almost 10 years at mine, and I was ignored, given the cold shoulder, and made to feel bad when I decided to move on...

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pauperesq (Jan 3, 2019 - 9:35 am)

I think this is a pretty common experience, sadly. Interestingly, there were two other attorneys who left my first firm about 9 months before me. The partner they worked for did not take it well. They put in two weeks notice but ended up leaving after 3 days because of the attitude they were getting.

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triplesix (Jan 3, 2019 - 10:47 am)

How dare they leave before being fired!!!

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newyorkcity (Jan 2, 2019 - 5:05 pm)

You're a good employee to have. Most people would take the new money and run. Give your old firm as much notice as possible, work your ass off to close loose ends, and let them know that you will be available to answer any questions even after you leave. Your old firm should be grateful.

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smallyer (Jan 2, 2019 - 6:19 pm)

"Anyone been in a similar position and can offer any advice in dealing with this anxiety?"

You're probably worrying over nothing. I had similar experience when I left government employment and started my practice. I officially gave 6 weeks notice and I think unofficially gave my boss more than that. I worked as hard as I knew how those last weeks because that's how everyone will remember you. I still regard my former boss as a friend and mentor even though we talk a lot less often than we used to.

From the employer side... I had an associate who told me in the initial interview he had an interest in another practice area. He ultimately left to work for a firm in that practice area. He (mostly) did great work while working for me and gave me plenty of notice when he left. We're not best bros anymore but I occasionally see him around town and it's always friendly.

If you leave in the right way, no one is going to be upset with you. You probably want to give a better reason than "our firm is known for being sloppy and unethical" but you can probably find one. If practice area concentration is your truthful reason then tell them that. It's hard to fault you for it.

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isthisit (Jan 3, 2019 - 6:39 am)

My last firm pretty much taught me Immigration law (mostly removal defense with family based petitions). However, after nearing my year there I asked for a raise and was told "nope, no money for raises this year". I thanked them and kept working but over the next 2 months I interviewed to go back in-house and with 5 other firms.

I took an offer to work for an Immigration firm in lower Manhattan for a significant pay raise. I gave my boss my two weeks once the ink was dry on my offer.

Don't give your employer more loyalty other than what's necessary. Be loyal to yourself fam. You're easily replaceable.

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smallyer (Jan 3, 2019 - 1:11 pm)

If you're talking about a small firm and you have hearings scheduled, 2 weeks is pretty short notice. My first legal job was terrible and I only gave that boss 2 weeks. My last associate gave me 4 weeks notice. That's a lot more appropriate and the new firm will probably appreciate that you want to give your old firm sufficient notice. Why burn a bridge if you don't have to?

"You're easily replaceable." Yes that's true but for a small firm the hiring process is still a huge time sink for the partners.

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